Tips for making Cafe Mocha at home?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Cyborg21, Jul 19, 2014.

  1. Cyborg21 macrumors 6502

    Cyborg21

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    #1
    Hello :)
    I am started to get interested in coffee and coffee making. I love Cafe Mocha and I want being able to make it at home. I read several recipes and watched some videos about it but I think it still does not tastes like I want it to. Is there any tips for making Cafe Mocha? Sorry for my bad english :)
     
  2. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    #2
    The first question is how fresh is the base of the drink...your coffee? Are you using whole beans and grinding immediately before making the coffee? are you using pre-ground coffee?

    Since the coffee is the foundation of the drink, it seems to me that is the most important element...before the cocoa, milk, etc.

    As I have no experience making the drink, the next question would be the quality of the cocoa, and the proper proportions of the ingredients.

    But it seems to me attention to the the coffee comes first...:D
     
  3. Cyborg21 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Cyborg21

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    #3
    I use pre-ground coffee with an espresso machine. Should I get a coffee grinder and Moka pot?
     
  4. Shrink, Jul 19, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2014

    Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    #4
    The answer is for the freshest coffee you must grind your own. Assuming that you can obtain reasonably freshly roasted beans from a specialty store, there is no question that you will notice a profound difference between pre-ground beans (which are likely stale, as ground beans are fresh for about 15 minutes and then start going stale), and freshly ground, freshly roasted (two weeks or less) beans.

    About the grinder. First is MUST be a BURR grinder...not one of those chopper things which will destroy the best of beans. As far as expense goes...if the grinder is to be used for drip or press, an inexpensive grinder will suffice. However, grinding for pour-over or espresso you need a better grinder. I don't mean to dip into your pocket :)p), but spend as much as you can reasonably afford for a grinder. Aside from the beans, which are clearly the most important element in an coffee production (the most expensive machine and grinder can't fix bad beans...GIGO!), the grinder is the next most important element in an espresso set up. (After that...good dosing, tamping and extraction timing are the next most important elements, and finally the espresso machine...at the bottom of the list).

    You might want to take a look at the Espresso Enthusiast thread...there are many knowledgable folks there who just love to talk coffee, and also love offering advice, suggestions (about technique and equipment) to anyone who posts there. It is a very welcoming and friendly...if slightly insane thread inhabited by total coffee crazies!

    You might want to discuss your current espresso set up so we can see where you are going.

    BEWARE: we will spend your money freely...so keep a tight grip on your wallet!:eek:

    About a moka pot. You say that you have an espresso machine. While there are many who love a Moka pot, and with GOOD BEANS, and a GOOD GRINDER, and proper technique, you can make wonderful coffee with it...it does not make espresso. No reason not to have both...and espresso machine and a moka pot for variety sake.
     
  5. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #5
    Make espresso using an espressso machine. Make 2 shots.

    Make hot chocolate using high quality chocolate, and thick cream. That, or squirt some liquid chocolate goodness into some cream.


    Pre-ground coffee isn't bad, as long as it's not the supermarket stuff. I don't know if there's a coffee roaster somewhere in your hood who will sell you the beans and grind it for you.

    I suppose you could buy a burr grinder. I'd recommend a Sunbeam EMO480. It's cheap, but it works really well, and it features an all-metal casing (i.e. it's not plastic). Incredible, incredible value. Get it on sale, and you'd be crazy to buy another grinder. Google it. Bing it. Altavista it. Check it out in coffee forums. I'm pretty sure it's the one they'd recommend.
     
  6. Kurwenal macrumors 6502a

    Kurwenal

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    #6
    I assume you are trying to copy a particular drink you have had, perhaps this one? If so, and your goal really is to try to make a coffee that tastes the same or very close to the one I linked, you need to find the right recipe. I have never tasted a Caffee Mocha, but a few minutes of Googling produced this recipe, which looks reliable (but who knows.....it's the Internet after all).

    Pay attention to Shrink's advice about the grinder. It is (by far) the most important piece of your espresso kit. And, think about it like this: if you are trying to mimic Starbucks, their coffee is not fresh (websites that track these sorts of things suggest that Starbucks coffee is on average 3-4 months old when it is finally ground, which is horrifying), but at least they are grinding it just before their superautomatic machines pull the shot. So they have stale (and over-roasted, but that's a different issue) coffee but freshly ground. When you use pre-ground, you almost certainly have stale coffee that also has a "stale" grind. Double whammy.

    I am not familiar with the Sunbeam grinder; it looks fairly low end, with plenty of clumping and retention, from my admittedly brief research. But, to be honest, if you are going to dump chocolate and all of that into the drink, I'm not sure it matters.

    Now, if you are not trying to copy SB (or someone else) in making a Caffe Mocha, and want to use a moka pot instead (the first is a recipe, the second is a brewing method), that is a very different conversation.

    Best of luck finding what you are after.
     
  7. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #7
    While we - all of us who dwell on the espresso thread - are in complete agreement that Mr Shrink knows that of which he writes, I have to advise you, OP, that Mr Kurwenal can also be classed as someone whose unparalleled expertise in this field makes his contributions well worth heeding.

    In other words, these guys know what they are talking about, especially when we discuss coffee……

    So, 'mocha coffee' is a drink, with chocolate components; a 'moka' pot, allows you to make an espresso using a stove top method (i.e. no pulling, no levers, no buttons, just plain old fashioned pot, water, ground espresso and the application of heat from the stove top). I have two such pots and love them to bits; however, this makes espresso, not 'mocha'. Making a good espresso is merely the first step in making a cup of 'mocha coffee'.

     
  8. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    #8
    I just took a close look at the Sunbeam EMO480 grinder mentioned in an earlier post. The user reviews are very mixed, and while user reviews may be a bit sketchy at times, there are too many negative reviews for comfort. Also, in looking at the specs of the grinder, I noted that there are only 25 grind adjustments. This means each "click" on the grind adjuster is a big jump from the previous setting...which means fine adjustments are impossible.

    For drip or press, that might be OK...but for pour over and, especially, espresso, much finer adjustments are needed to get extraction time right.

    For a lower priced (but more than the Sunbeam) grinder, you might look at the Rancilio Rocky. If your budget allows, Mazzer grinders are pretty much the Gold Standard for grinders. My grinder, although not a Mazzer, has Mazzer produced burrs. When my grinder was being designed, the guys who made it could have had their own burrs made, but chose the Mazzer burrs for their clear superiority.

    Rule of thumb: There is no such thing as overkill when it comes to grinders.
     
  9. velocityg4 macrumors 68040

    velocityg4

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    #9
    If I'm not feeling lazy. I'd use my coffee mill and grind some fresh beans. Make the coffee in a french press. Then heat up the milk in a saucepan and melt in some of my Ghiradelli 60% Cacao Chocolate Chips or Scrap some of my Abuelita Mexican Chocolate.

    If I'm feeling lazy. I'd just use Kirkland pre-ground decaf in a $25 auto drip that is rarely cleaned. Just rinsed between pots. Then mix in some Ovaltine, add some milk then nuke it for 25 seconds to warm in back up.

    Buying a mocha machine sounds a bit absurd. Just use a whisk and a good saucepan. If you don't want to risk burning anything get a double boiler. Although it'll take longer for the chocolate. I'm not sure if the mocha machine could even handle good quality solid chocolate. Like Ghiradelli or Guittard.
     
  10. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    #10
    A moka pot is not a mocha machine...

    A moka pot is simply a stove top device for making coffee. Technically, it does not produce espresso, but with high quality beans, a proper grind, and simple technique, a wonderful coffee can be produced described by a friend as a cross between espresso and pour over.

    (Ridiculous Technical Note: The universally accepted definition of espresso requires that it's production method reach 9 BARS of pressure, while a moka pot reaches 1.3-1.5 BARS. Having said all that nonsense....a rose by any other name...)
     
  11. Kurwenal macrumors 6502a

    Kurwenal

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    #11
    Honest question: what is a mocha machine?
     
  12. velocityg4 macrumors 68040

    velocityg4

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    #12
    Ah, since you had already mentioned the coffee making technique. I figured the Moka pot was some fancy frou-frou French hot chocolate maker.:p

    It looks similar to a percolator or vacuum coffeemaker.
     
  13. mobilehaathi macrumors G3

    mobilehaathi

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    #13
    OP, Shrink is sending you a message in his characteristically subtle manner.
     
  14. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #14
    About as subtle as a sledge hammer!
     
  15. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    #15
    Boy, when you put it together that way...I am a subtle dog, aren't I!?:cool:

    About a subtle as a you-know-what in a punch bowl!:p
     
  16. mobilehaathi macrumors G3

    mobilehaathi

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    #16
    Mescaline?:eek:
     
  17. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    #17
    Perhaps the scatological expression to which I refer pre-dates you, youngster!:eek:
     
  18. mobilehaathi macrumors G3

    mobilehaathi

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    #18
    No, and I'd continue on this line of jokery, but I wouldn't want to derail the thread. ;)
     
  19. Kurwenal macrumors 6502a

    Kurwenal

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    #19
    OK, Mr. Joker, I nominate you to go pull a doppio, add 4 shots of Hershey's syrup, and return and report. :cool:
     
  20. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    #20
    Oh...BLECH!

    I just this moment finished my afternoon double shot...don't ruin the wonderful aftertaste I am now enjoying!:(
     
  21. Kurwenal macrumors 6502a

    Kurwenal

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    #21
    Now now now.....remember Shrink's Law: if mobilehaathi likes to have 4 squirts of Hershey's syrup in his espresso....he is entitled to do that.








    Even if it is complete crap and an affront to the universe.
     
  22. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    #22
    Aah...hoist on my own petard!:eek:
     
  23. mobilehaathi macrumors G3

    mobilehaathi

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    #23
    Ewwww, Hershey's? I'm not, a priori, against a mocha, but good god man you're trying to provoke me. ;)
     
  24. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #24
    Ah, yes. Indeed….

    Ah, no, (as the proud owner of two moka pots) I actually don't think it does. Not at all….

    Mocha coffee is a variant of coffee, (starting with an espresso base) to which other ingredients, such as hot milk, (as in a latte) and, last, but not least some chocolate, seem to have been added.

    A moka pot, on the other hand, is a delightful little stove top number on which (Shrink's precise corrections notwithstanding) something approximating to espresso can be made, gurgling beautifully all the while….



    Four shots of Hershey's? That counts as something resembling a slow torture, that does…...
     
  25. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    #25
    Shrink apologizes for being a technical stuff jerk!:eek:
     

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